Thursday, 2 February 2017

Meet the world's oldest surgeon who at 89 years old still performs four ops a day

At 89 years old and standing at a petite 4ft 9ins she is thought to be the world’s oldest working surgeon. The Russian still performs operations four days a week, from her vantage point perched atop a stool – to allow her the best possible view of her patients.

A Facebook post reveals that Alla, from Ryazan, southeast of Moscow, begins each day at 8am holding a clinic for her patients. Three hours later, she heads to theatres at Hospital Number 11 in Ryazan to begin her day’s operating list.

There an assistant helps her up on to a small platform to give her a better view of her patient on the operating table.

Over the course of her 67-year career Alla has performed more than 10,000 surgeries.

However, medicine isn’t always where she saw her career going – she originally wanted to be a geologist, reports Russian newspaper Kommersant.

But she was inspired to become a surgeon after reading a novel about doctors and went on to study at the Moscow Medical Institute.

She told the newspaper that, at the the time, there was fierce competition to get a place at the institute but that only made her more determined.

Alla chose to specialise in proctology, a field of medicine that deals with bowel and rectal problems.

She said at the time you could count all the proctologists in Russia on one hand and no one wanted to handle that part of the body because it was too messy, but that was no deterrent for her.

Reflecting on how tough it was to survive in medical school, she told Kommersant: “Once a month the medical students could depend on getting a bottle of alcohol, we would run to the market and use it to barter – half a litre could get you a loaf of bread.

“We only survived because we split everything between us in the student halls.

“My parents, who barely had enough to eat themselves, sent a few potatoes from our village in Ryazan.

“Other students shared their salo [cured pork fat] and grains. That’s how we managed.

“I remember one girl brought a whopping great bream. It was incredible!

“We dined out on it for a week and then made soup from the bones we had gnawed on until they shone.”

Over the course of her 67-year career, Alla has performed more than 10,000 surgeries, it’s estimated

And is retirement on the horizon for Alla, who will turn 90 on May 5?

It doesn’t appear so.

Alla was quoted in as saying: “I work and everything.

“I have nothing to do in retirement.

I have nothing to do in retirement. Doctor – it’s not just a profession, it’s a way of lifeAlla Ilyinichna LevushkinaOldest Working Surgeon In The World

“Doctor – it’s not just a profession, it’s a way of life.

“Why else would the surgeon live, if not to work?”

The 89-year-old, who never married and has no children, lives in a studio apartment with her eight rescue cats.

When not at work she helps to care for her disabled nephew.

In honour of her loyalty to the profession, Alla was recently awarded the prize for the best doctor in Russia.

Culled from The Sun UK

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